Plateau: Assailants attack another community

Days after the deadly Christmas Day attacks on Bokkos, yet another community came under attack in the same Local Government on Thursday night.

The Yuletide incident has been regarded as the worst outbreak of violence in Plateau since May and has left more than 190 people dead and hundreds injured.

Reacting to the event, Transition Committee Chairman of Bokkos, Monday Kassah disclosed that marauders attacked the community at night burning and destroying homes.

Kassah explained that no death was recorded due to the timely intervention of security personnel.

While giving an update on the Christmas Day attack, the committee chairman explained the number of casualties still stands at 195, further confirming that rescue operations were ongoing to find missing persons.

Of the number, 148 were killed in Bokkos Local Government Area, 19 in Mangu Local Government Area, and 27 in Barkin Ladi. 1,290 houses were burnt down in Bokkos council, one house was razed in Mangu LGA and that of Barkin Ladi was yet to be ascertained at press time.

The Christmas Day attacks which started in the Bokkos area spilled into neighbouring Barkin Ladi where 30 people were found dead, according to local chairman Danjuma Dakil.

Plateau State governor Caleb Mutfwang condemned the violence, calling it “barbaric, brutal and unjustified”.

“The government will take proactive measures to curb ongoing attacks against innocent civilians,” said Gyang Bere, the governor’s spokesperson.

Gunfire could still be heard on late Monday afternoon, according to a source from the region,

A resident of Mushu village said people were sleeping when shots rang out.

“We were scared because we weren’t expecting an attack. People hid, but the assailants captured many of us, some were killed, others wounded,” he told AFP.

Amnesty International criticised the government in the wake of the attacks, saying “the Nigerian authorities have been failing to end frequent deadly attacks on rural communities of Plateau state,” in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

The plateau region has been riddled for several years by religious and ethnic tensions.

Hundreds of people have been killed while thousands have been rendered homeless in cases of intercommunal violence in recent years.

Competition for natural resources between nomadic herders and farmers, intensified by rapid population growth and climate pressures, has also exacerbated social tensions and sparked violence.